Organic Bytes 31 January 2019

31 January 2019 — Organic Consumers Association

ESSAY OF THE WEEK

‘Radical Rethink’

woman sitting in a farm crop field with her back to the camera facing the sunriseA new study calling for a “radical rethink” of the relationship between policymakers and corporations reinforces what we’ve been saying for years: Our triple global crises of deteriorating public health, world hunger and global warming share common root causes.

The best way to address these crises is to address what they all have in common: an unhealthy, inequitable food system perpetuated by a political and economic system largely driven by corporate profit.

The study, the result of three years of work by 26 commissioners from several countries, was released this week by the Lancet Commission on Obesity. It comes at a time when climate scientists have sounded their most urgent and alarming warnings to date.

It also comes at a time of keen interest in a Green New Deal, whose backers are calling for nothing less than radical solutions to the most pressing issues of our time.

Read Ronnie’s essay: ‘New Study Confirms: Degenerative Food & Farming System Poses Mortal Threat’

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MILLIONS AGAINST MONSANTO

Keep ‘Em Comin’

judge in robes in a courtroom banging a wooden gavelIn a few weeks, Monsanto will go on trial again. And when it does, the pesticide-maker won’t be able to suppress evidence that the company ghostwrote scientific studies and otherwise tried to influence scientists and regulators in an attempt to hide the potential health risks of its flagship product, Roundup weedkiller.

This week, U.S. District Judge Vince Chhabria, the federal judge in San Francisco overseeing 620 cases involving Monsanto’s Roundup weedkiller and cancer victims, ruled that the evidence could be introduced in the upcoming trial. According to a Reuters report,Chhabria said the documents were “super relevant.”

Chhabria’s ruling almost guarantees that the documents in question will play a role when, on February 25, a jury in San Francisco Federal Court, begins hearing the case of Edwin Hardeman vs. Monsanto. Hardeman alleges that Roundup caused his non-Hodgkin lymphoma cancer.

This latest ruling is just one more piece of bad news to come Monsanto’s way in recent weeks. Read our blog post to learn more.

Read ‘And the Hits Just Keep Coming: More Bad News for Monsanto’

Make a tax-deductible donation to OCA’s Millions Against Monsanto campaign

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ACTION ALERT

Save the Bees!

Close up of a honey bee on a yellow flowerAccording to a 2017 report from the Center for Biological Diversity, nearly 1 in 4 pollinators are imperiled and at increasing risk of extinction.

What’s killing the bees? Neonicotinoid pesticides, sold by Bayer, and used by Monsanto (now owned by Bayer) to pretreat seeds (which adds to the cost of the seeds, without providing any benefit).

It’s time to reintroduce the Save America’s Pollinators Act, a bill that would suspend the use of neonicotinoids and require the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to complete a thorough assessment and ensure that any uses of these insecticides do not cause unreasonable and adverse effects on pollinators.

TAKE ACTION: Ask your members of Congress to co-sponsor the Save America’s Pollinators Act!

Print this downloadable petition and collect more signatures

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ACTION ALERT

Watch It!

two people sitting beside each other watching a laptop computer screenWant to know what all the #GreenNewDeal (GND) buzz is about? Find out by watching the GND livestream on February 5.

Want to know why we’re mobilizing the food and farming movement to support the GND—and how you can help? Read this.

Leaders of the Sunrise Movement are asking people to attend or host a livestream watch party on February 5. OCA staff members have all signed up—and we hope you will, too!

Once you sign up, the Sunrise Movement will provide you with an easy step-by-step guide. You can choose to make your party public so others can join, or private with just your friends.

We think the GND is our best hope for drastic and rapid reform of the industrial food system—including getting rid of factory farms and GMOs.

But the GND won’t happen unless we are relentless in our efforts to get politicians on board. Let’s do this!

Read Ronnie’s message on how and why to host or attend a #GreenNewDeal watch party

Download this Fact Sheet to share at the watch party

TAKE ACTION: Ask your members of Congress to support the Sunrise Movement’s Green New Deal!

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SUPPORT OCA & CRL

Lots to Do

two people helping each other hiking up a mountain at sunsetMonsanto’s Roundup weedkiller turns up in everything from Cheerios, to orange juice to ice cream.

Harmful levels of arsenic and lead found in a long list of popular children’s fruit juices.

Industrial chemicals (PFOA and PFOS) linked to kidney and testicular cancer, hypertension and other ailments allowed to pollute your drinking water.

As the saying goes, if you’re not angry, you’re not paying attention. Corporations get a free pass to poison and pollute, in the name of “free-market enterprise.” And our lawmakers and regulatory agency officials, addicted to corporate campaign contributions, let it happen.

It has to stop. We all have to help.

OCA will keep up the pressure on corporations, with consumer campaigns and ongoing and soon-to-be-announced lawsuits.

We’ll also crank up our lobbying arm to help bring down the politicians who betray us, and elect new leaders who will work for us, not Wall Street.

But we can’t just expose the problems. We also have to shine a light on the solutions. A rapidly scaled up organic regenerative food and farming system will give us cleaner water, healthier food, more vibrant local economies. It can even go a long way toward solving our climate crisis.

We have a lot of work to do this year. Can we count on your support?

Make a tax-deductible donation to the Organic Consumers Association

Support Citizens Regeneration Lobby, OCA’s 501(c)(4) lobbying arm (not tax-deductible)

Click here for more ways to support our work

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REGENERATION

Six Reasons

gardener with a handful of kale cropVirtually every growing environmental and health problem can be traced back to modern food production, including food insecurity, obesity, chronic disease, air and water pollution, global warming—and more.

That’s the conclusion drawn by Dr. Joseph Mercola in a recent article published on Mercola.com. Mercola writes:

Unfortunately, industrial farming has created a series of unsustainable situations in less than 70 years, and evidence suggests we will not make it until the end of the century if we continue along the path of degenerative food and farming.

How do we get out of this mess? By doing everything we can, as consumers, to support organic regenerative food and farming. And by insisting that our local, state and federal lawmakers drastically overhaul old food and farming policies that reward the wrong kind of agriculture, and replace them with policies that promote ethical and regenerative farming practices—or lose our votes.

Read ‘Top Six Reasons to Support Regenerative Agriculture’

Support Regeneration International with a tax-deductible donation

Sign up for Regeneration International’s newsletter

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VIDEO OF THE WEEK

It’s (Not) Complicated

brown cow wearing a bell in a field by a mountain landscapeThere’s a lot of confusion out there when it comes to “grass-fed” beef. This little video, and this in-depth report, do a great job of clearing up that confusion.

Here’s the short of it. Almost all cattle spend the first part of their lives eating mostly grass. But conventionally raised cattle—which make up more than 90 percent of the market—spend the last phase of their lives on factory farm feedlots, eating GMO grain laced with antibiotics and other unnatural substances.

What’s wrong with that? A lot, as you’ll learn from the video and report.

Watch ‘Back to Grass’

Read ‘Back to Grass: The Market Potential for U.S. Grassfed Beef

Read ‘Your Grass-Fed Beef May Not Have Come from a Cow Grazing in a Pasture. Here’s Why.

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LITTLE BYTES

This Week’s Essential Reading

Arsenic and Lead Are in Your Fruit Juice: What You Need to Know.

Good News if You Buy Organic Food—It’s Getting Cheaper

Big Brands Like Häagen-Dazs and Tide Are Testing Reusable Packaging

Coke Caught Influencing Health Policy Again, Increasing Obesity

Will Our Time on Earth Be Preserved in Chicken Bones?

How Diapers and Menstrual Pads Are Exposing Babies and Women to Hormone-Disrupting, Toxic Chemicals

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